I looove roses, how about you? To me, they symbolize beauty and grace; one of my favorites in a garden. Anyone who has grown roses before will know that they take a little bit of extra lovin’ every now and then to keep them happy, but to the rose gardener, their joys far outweigh any extra care. Ron Daniels certainly feels this way as well, and we were so excited to have him speak a few weeks ago as part of our complimentary Spring classes we offered here at Riverbend Nurseries! Ron is a former athlete who, many years ago, began growing roses at his home in Tennessee and it became a passion to where he now grows over a hundred different types! He is a Master Gardener and an American Rose Society Consulting Rosarian for the well-known Cheekwood Botanical Gardens in Nashville. For the rose lover, you will be interested in hearing his advice on growing these beauties!
General Tips to get started:
Cutting and sharing roses promotes more and bigger blooms
Roses love raised beds!
Promotes good drainage and keeps rose roots from getting too wet (they don’t like “wet feet”!)
You can amend and control soil thru a raised bed
A good raised bed size for roses is 18″ length x 24″ depth
Plant roses where you can enjoy from inside your home (sounds wonderful, doesn’t it!)
When buying a Rose shrub, pick one that has at least 3 stems/canes to it.
Roses love full sun- they need at least 4-6 hours of direct sunlight a day; they will not thrive in shade (ideal locations will be facing East, South, or West)
Invest in soil mixture and your gardening beds:
1/3 top soil
1/3 organic- from plant or animal (amend your soil with these three, mixing equal parts into your soil you already have; be sure to break up any clay you have in your soil very well)
Dig a hole 2 across and 2 deep.
To protect roots, carefully cut the bottom off the bucket the rose came in.
Set the bucket in the hole (with bottom cut off), cut down one side and remove remaining bucket
Add amended soil around sides; finish planting
Wind Protection and Winter Care:
It is important to protect the graft union (where two or more canes meet near base)- to do this, mulch
Use mulch that is natural like brown shredded pine, compost, or pine needles (we offer all three at Riverbend!)
Low and aggressive= bigger, fuller flowers (this is what Mr. Daniels recommends)
High= ore flowers but much smaller
Important with Roses-Do NOT just depend on rainfall
Deep soak every 3 or so days in Spring and Summer (if we are not getting rain)- promotes good roots and healthy plant
Hand watering “makes” you look at the plants and notice any issues early
Water near the base of the shrubs; roses don’t like their leaves wet really often
When forsythia blooms in Spring, it is a good time to begin fertilizing your roses.
For the beginner who wants to get into growing Roses, Ron suggests ‘New Dawn’ climbing rose- hardy, easy to grow, or Easy Elegance Roses- a great beginner Rose variety (both offered at Riverbend Nurseries!).
For more about roses, visit www.nashvillerosesociety.com . Look into their Rose Study Garden in partnership with Cheekwood Botanical Gardens.
For a children’s book on Roses, Ron recommends Exploring the Garden with the Little Rose by Sheri Fink
Thanks to all of you who came out to our complimentary Spring classes! We offer different events year round- keep up with the latest happenins’ thru our monthly newsletter, Facebook, and Instagram!